How does one become a bishop in the Catholic church, without learning that God kind of frowns on theft? I mean he/she …wait it’s the Catholic church … HE even took the time to write it down before handing that one, along with nine others, to Moses on Mount Sinai.
I’m mean Jesus turning water to wine certainly angered wine merchants, but it wasn’t technically theft.
Italian Thieves Weren’t Even Particularly Bright
In a bizarre story that combines elements of Mario Puzo’s The Godfather, Ocean’s Twelve, and Robert Ludlum’s The Road to Omaha, officials arrested three men in a plot to smuggle $26 million in cash out of Switzerland using a private plane.
Proving that truth is often stranger than fiction, the three arrested were a former Italian spy, an Italian financier, and Monsignor Nunzio Scarano.
The arrests came just two days after Pope Francis announced the formation of a commission designed to root out corruption in the Vatican Bank.
“Saint Peter,” Pope Francis said recently, “did not have a bank account.”
This is far from the first time that the Vatican has been embarrassed by its bank, a bank long purported to be a favored laundering method of the Italian Mafia that, for example, found its former president — dubbed “God’s Banker” — found hanging from a London bridge in 1982.
Vatican Supposedly Scouring Corruption From its Coffers
Monsignor Nunzio Scarano is no stranger to the “holy handcuffs.” Just last month he was stripped of his post after being accused of a separate act of money laundering and theft. Scarano is accused of taking more than $700,000 donated for terminally ill patients and using it to pay off a personal mortgage. He did so, according to investigators, by withdrawing $16,000 at a time, giving it to 56 different friends, who then paid him back with checks so he could, in theory, avoid detection.
The Vatican has pledged its full attention and cooperation to the matter and hopes by doing so that this scandal ridden institution may finally start to clean up its name.
The Vatican Bank, which is called the Institute for Works of Religion, “must become an accepted member of the international financial system,” the bank’s new chief executive, Ernst von Freyberg, recently told Vatican reporters. “My role is to improve our reputation, so that the Church is no longer darkened by bad news from us. … We have to be clean on all legal fronts.”